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Learning to say "no" is one of the most difficult things in life for those brides who are "people pleasers." We want to make everybody happy — even when it's at our own expense (sometimes literally). This habit can be very dangerous if you're planning a wedding on a budget and have a lot of friends who are used to always getting their way when they ask you for something.
There will be some big decisions that you and your fiancé will make about how you want things to go, and you have to stick by those decisions. You can't tell one guest one thing and another guest another thing — they'll find out and you'll get busted and it will be embarrassing. Agree with your fiancé about the rules and parameters surrounding your wedding and stick to your guns. To help you get prepared, here are three things you can expect guests to argue with you about.
1. Children at the Wedding: You may have decided to have an adults-only event for any number of reasons (budget, environment, peace and quiet). You will always have a guest who thinks this doesn't apply to his or her child and you will have to reinforce that the rule is universal. The only exception would be your flower girls or ring bearer because they're actual members of the wedding party. An exception for one or two couples is unfair to those who spent time and money to leave the kiddos at home for a romantic weekend.
2. Plus Ones: Each guest added exponentially increases your food and beverage costs, among other things. Set parameters and stick to them. If they're living together, you must invite both of them. If they've been together for six or more months and you've socialized with them, you should extend the "plus one." But for your friends who are playing the field, you have to lay down the law. If they aren't in a serious relationship, no "plus one" extended.
3. Special Presentations or Surprises: Unfortunately, some guests get a little bit of liquid courage in them and can't wait to get their hands on the microphone at your wedding reception. Unless you want bad karaoke or long, inappropriate speeches, make sure your DJ or wedding planner know that nobody gets to play with the mic spontaneously. If your wedding planner is approached about a "surprise" for you, he or she should tell you what's up and put an end to anything you don't want to have as part of your wedding memories.
Owner of Weddings in Vieques, a destination-wedding planning company off the coast of Puerto Rico, Sandy Malone has helped countless couples plan their big day since 2007.